I am a cruciferal. Known to bring good luck to those who ingest me, I am an herbaceous annual plant native to Europe and western Asia. Romans used my seeds as well as my leaves. As a member of the cabbage family I am related to watercress, mustard and radishes. I can grow as high as twenty inches but many times my tender baby leaves are harvested when they are about three inches long. My leaves are similar in shape to a radish or a dandelion, but my nutty, bitter flavor is by far the best. I am a relatively perishable green and should be used a couple days after harvest. Some people store me in a glass of fresh water (like cut flowers) that would be changed daily, but most refrigerate me with a damp cover at my base. We think that's best. Consumed raw, I am a feature in many salads, a component of many other salads, and I combine magically with cheese (goat or parmesan slivers) and citrus (blood or cara-cara oranges). I can even add some zip to your best potato salad. When cooked, I make a great base for fish or beef entrees, or wilted as a side dish. If you're careful I can even be fried. Strong in fiber, I am also a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and calcium. As a pharmafood I am considered to have the properties of a stimulant and a diuretic.

1039 Produce Quiz courtesy of:
Richard Leibowitz
Culinary Specialty Produce
"We Follow Orders"

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The answer to last week's quiz: TAMARILLO (RED OR GOLD)
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